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OnMedea: News Corp. Archives

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broadcast_networks_death_and_dying.jpgFor Broadcast Networks, the end is coming and it's time for them to Accept their fate.

This isn't to say ABC, CBS, FOX, MBS, NBC, Univision and The CW (and similar Broadcast Networks around the world) are going away.  They'll just have to transform into one of the million other "Channels" out there - high profile Channels with good programming and production values - but still just another button on the Great Media Grid like ESPN, TNT, USA, Oxygen, (indeed), YouTube, etc.

According to a model developed by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in her 1969 book "On Death and Dying", there are Five Stages of Grief

Over the past 20 years or so, Broadcast Networks have bounced around the First Four Stages in an effort to fight off the inevitable:

1.  Denial:  Broadcast Networks will always be the only place to reach a large audience.  We don't see that ever going away.  No one is going to watch the shit they make on Cable.  It's nothing but George Foreman Grill infomercials and drunken Jackass teenagers riding their bikes into traffic.

2.  Anger:  It's just not right!  They make such crap on Basic Cable.  How are they pulling in more advertising than us?!  I don't give a shit about the ratings of "Jersey Shore", the content on Broadcast Networks is far superior and always will be.  Goddamnit!  And don't you dare mention that fucking "Mad Men" to me again!  And Hell will freeze over before we ever produce a series for that inferior platform  There's no syndication value.  It's bullshit!

3.  Bargaining:  The playing field is not level.  It's not fair.  We really need you cable and satellite operators to pay us to retransmit our signal.  Don't forget - we're the Broadcast Networks.  If you give us two revenue streams, we'll give you really great programming with high ratings and advertising rates that are healthy for everyone.  Don't you realize there is only one place to reach a large audience?

4.  Depression:  Remember when Saturday night was the greatest night on television - when three networks (and three network Presidents) controlled every household?  Everyone had incredible line-ups.  It will never be that good again.  Thursday night used to be a place where advertisers needed us to launch a new movie or car or department store sales.  Those were the days.  Oh well, at least we still have our beach houses and court side basketball seats.

5.  Acceptance:  It's going to be okay.  It's not so bad to be equated with TBS.  I mean, they have Conan O'Brien now.  They are sort of like a Broadcast Network.  And we're still bigger than most of the other Channels.  And we'll get the Super Bowl back one day (after ESPN and The Food Network have their turns).  It's all good.


The death of Broadcast Networks may not happen in the next five years but it IS going to happen and the sooner we put them out of their misery and end that painful decline, the faster the industry can heal and begin to grow again. 

leslie_moonves.jpgMake no mistake, nothing can be done to save Broadcast Networks.  It's an old concept in a new world. 

For old school TV executives and their Madison Avenue chronies who are accustomed to lavish Upfront Presentations at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden and the International Space Station, it's time to just let it go.  The Days of Wine and Roses and Fine Dining and Muffin Baskets are over.

Broadcast Network defenders (yes, Les Moonves, this means you) are becoming pathetic.  Face the facts, ESPN and Google are more valuable than CBS.  It may not seem fair - but there are many new Sheriffs in town.   Remember, if  you're in a business where single-digit drops in viewers is the New Growth, your business sucks.

So what are the Broadcast Networks supposed to do next?  Very simple.  Just accept equal footing (two revenue streams - subscription and advertising - enough with this silly Retrans business that no one can understand) and continue to run your business as just another Channel on the Grid

In the future (and it's coming), with a channel lineup grid that will be sorted Alphabetically and not by "importance" or "size" (and will include TV channels, websites and whatever else comes up) programming is, as it always has been, King . 

And may the best programmer win.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

jason_bateman_cuts_iphone_line_2.jpgWho cares?  He's a celebrity and celebrities win.  Deal with it.  No one would care if the Pope or Rupert Murdoch was moved to the front of the line.

I think the 'booing' was more because of the Orbit Gum Commercial Jason produced for DumbDumb and Electus than for getting special treatment by a store manager.

I also heard a rumor that at the Apple Store on 5th Avenue in New York, once it was discovered that Ben Silverman was standing in line like a common schmuck, people in front of him laid on the ground.  Police then ordered Ben to step over and on their bodies to get to the front.  Ben did gladly and was able to get the last phone in stock (which was promptly comped to him by the store because of who he was).

And in Queens, New York, Ricky Van Veen waited in line for over 24 hours and still didn't get a phone and wasn't allowed to cut.  He also still hasn't been able to get tickets to Twilight Eclipse.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

A couple of moments ago, I went to to see what fresh content they had put up today and was greeted with a heartbreaking headline about four missing American college students in Haiti who were on a humanitarian mission when the earthquake struck last week. 

inappropriate_online_advertising_2.jpgThen, just as I was going to click-through to read about the parents' anguished search for their children... The Human Target - Premiering On Fox - burst through the story headline with digital flames and bullet holes.

inappropriate_online_advertising_3.jpgCall me crazy, and I realize it's hard to pick and chose which stories get the full animated advertising treatment, but this seems a little inappropriate to me.

Can't The Human Target just burst through Ben Silverman and Jeff Zucker stories?

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

american_idol_headstone.jpgAnother iconic American television show is dead. 

Simon Cowell (with impeccable timing as always) announced today at the Television Critics Association winter press tour he has decided to leave American Idol to become creator/producer/judge of the American version of his hit UK talent show The X Factor.  That show will launch in 2011 on Fox.

Simon has realized (along with the rest of the country) that American Idol has become irrelevant and knew it was time to move on. 

A word of advice to Simon Fuller and the producers of American Idol... make this season your last.  Don't attempt some lame version of A.I. without Simon Cowell.  It won't work and people won't watch.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

But only Viacom's cable networks and digital assetsCBS (not wanting to leave the cocoon of Old Media) should buy Viacom's Paramount Pictures.

Is there any chance in hell this could actually happen?  Could Rupert Murdoch pull off an acquisition of that magnitude?

No fucking way.  Not while old man Redstone continues to draw a breath.

So, yes, it's most likely a non-starter.  But even in a fantasy scenario, wouldn't it be great to finally get rid of Viacom and Redstone?  Both are simply a mess and completely unnecessary. 

[Note:  I realize Sumner Redstone is Chairman of the Board and majority stockholder of CBS, but Les Moonves is the much more appealing face of that company, not SumnerSumner is the face of Viacom... and the media world has had enough.]

newscorp_buys_viacom.jpgImagine News Corp (which has the weakest portfolio of cable assets save Fox News, FX and those regional sports thingies) with Viacom's cable channels: MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, TV Land, VH1, etc. etc. 

This would immediately fill all News Corp's demographic needs and, in the digital channel universe, put them on par with Time Warner, Disney and, in late 2010, Comcast

Viacom was never going to be on par with anyone as long as Sumner is around (even with those assets)... so it's time to shut it down.

As for CBS and their acquisition of Paramount Pictures... they, obviously, just want to be an old media company and ride that peaceful, easy feeling all the way into the grave.  Buying Paramount Pictures (and, hey, why not MGM while they're at it!) would help realize that mid-1990s-vertical-alignment-synergy-world they are striving for.  And based on Comcast's purchase of NBCU (which valued Universal Studios at less than $3 billion), Paramount, with its much smaller film and television library, can be picked up at quite a fire sale bargain.  (Wait two years and it will be even more of a bargain!)

Also, this would give CBS the opportunity to shut down the ridiculous CBS Films vanity project before it becomes a further embarrassment.

So, think about it people.  A deal like this would really be a win-win-win for everyone... and help us to get rid of (at least a part of) Sumner Redstone once and for all.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

fox_pop.jpgSTOP DOING SHIT!  Just stop it.  People have already lost their ability to focus on any one particular thing and you want to "FoxPopize" your movies? 

Let me explain.  20th Century Fox (that name is truly fitting in this case) is debuting a new service called FoxPop on the upcoming Blu-ray and DVD release of "Night At The Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian".  While a viewer is watching this horrible film, FoxPop will send out "a constant barrage of facts, photos, games and trivia questions related to the movie" to the user's Mac, PC or iPhone.

fox_pop_night_at_the_museum.jpgWho gives a fucking shit?! 

Do the execs at Fox Home Entertainment really think the consumer's viewing experience will be enhanced and they will, in turn, embrace and save the dying DVD business by buzzing someone's iPhone when T.rex appears on screen and asking "how many bones does this dino have?"  Most people barely have time to watch one movie a month and you're trying to waste more of their time!

It's obvious Fox has quite a bit of extra money lying around to be able to attempt this lame exercise.  But I beg you... please stop with all the bullshit and put your money where it really needs to go:  Digital downloading technology, consumer education about digital downloading and digital downloading implementation

That's the future - not a zapping an iPhone to tell us how many hair follicles Ben Stiller has on his head.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea
going_rogue_sarah_palin_cover.jpgThe cover of Sarah Palin's latest work of fiction "Going Rogue: An American Life" was released today by publisher HarperCollins

Anyone waiting to see if Ms. Palin can write in complete sentences WON'T be able to find that out anytime soon because she didn't really write the book.  Most likely she talked into a speaker phone from her Chevy Suburban to Ghost Writer Lynn Vincent who turned Ms. Palin's incoherent thoughts into a simple, easy-to-understand prose that will further separate the growing division in America.

What do we know about Lynn Vincent?  Not much lately.  I have a feeling Ms. Vincent has been locked in Dick Cheney's bunker and will remain there until "Going Rogue: An American Life" is safely in the $1 bins at Costco (or when Ms. Palin becomes President - whichever comes first). 

What we DO know about Lynn Vincent (46) OFF-THE-RECORD is that she is a total Christian Right wacko with hardcore beliefs about abortion, gay marriage, Jews, Democrats, Muslims, etc.  In general, she's a woman with a deep hatred in her heart for all those who are not like her. 

ON THE RECORD, she's a fairly solid writer who (I'm sure) has gay and Muslim friends.  OK, maybe gay friends.  OK, in the closet gay friends.  OK, maybe not.

Lynn_vincent_going_rogue.jpgOver the next few weeks (until the book is released in November), there will be numerous attempts by the "Illegal-should-be-abolished" media on the left to dig up more about Ms. Vincent.  But I have a feeling she will be "unavailable for comment" (though Fox News may be able to land an "Exclusive".  Hannity will be "tough but fair" and manage to wring out what her favorite flavor of Jell-o is).

As tempting as it is to go after whatever low-hanging fruit there is on Ms. Vincent, I say the real focus should remain on Ms. Palin - who, frankly, must be stopped.

Somewhere buried in the digital universe there is further proof that she is completely out of her mind and... dangerous.  For the good of the world, it is our duty to dig it up before she writes again.

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

P.S. - Sarah, you should have gone more "Coulter" with your cover.  The men want to see you in a black mini-dress (especially Sean Hannity and his repressed sexual urges).

About Jill Kennedy

Jill Kennedy - Blogger - OnMedea Jill Kennedy is an Ivy League MBA / refugee from Lehman Brothers.

Manka Bros. (and the Manka Business Channel) hired her (for a very low sum) to cover the world of media (not the world of Medea) in her own words without corporate interference.

Manka Bros Studios - OnMedea - Follow On Twitter


About Medea

Medea Medea was a real bitch from classical mythology - as most famously dramatized by Euripides.

She was a sorceress and wife of Jason, whom she assisted in obtaining the Golden Fleece. When Jason deserted her, she chopped up their children. One could say, Medea acted as rationally as a major media company.


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